Dhruv helicopters fly high in Uttarakhand

vram

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Dhruv helicopters fly high in Uttarakhand | The Hindu

Prove their mettle dropping paratroopers in some of the most inaccessible areas

Four Dhruv helicopters pressed into service by the Army in flood-hit Uttarakhand have proved their mettle in carrying out relief operations and dropping paratroopers in some of the most inaccessible areas. They have been focussing on the Gaurikund-Kedarnath region. Rescue work assumed urgency as the India Meteorological Department on Thursday forecast more rains in the Himalayan State from June 24 to 28. IMD Director-General L.S. Rathore said the next wet spell was likely to see light to moderate rainfall.

Launching one of the biggest rescue operations in Uttarakhand, the Army has mobilised nearly 8,100 troops, as it simultaneously reached out to thousands of stranded people in four regions — Rishikesh-Uttarkashi-Harsil-Gangotri; Rudraprayag-Kedarnath; Joshimath-Badrinath and Dharchula-Tawaghat in Pithoragarh district.

Officials in New Delhi said the HAL-built Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH), which can carry 10-16 people on heights of 10,000 feet, performed effectively in dropping paratroopers and evacuating stranded people.
 

vram

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Massive rescue ops by defence forces in rain-ravaged U'khand | Business Standard

Ministry sources said so far only 18 choppers have been deployed as IAF pilots do not find it safe to land as soil has loosened up due to rains.

Due to this problem, the IAF has been able to deploy only its ALH Dhruv and other light helicopters in the worst-hit Kedarnath area, where a 14 km road stretch got washed away in flash floods.

So effectively it appears that the Dhruv has been quite literally a saviour for the Army.
 

vram

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Army aviation need expansion..
Very true!! the more I watch these rescue operations the more I am convinced that the Army is best having a bigger aviation set-up.Its not only in war that these copters are going to be used in the future. India's civilain Disaster Response teams are to say shortly not up to the challenge currently.

Also you simply cannot miss the presence of the Dhruv in these operations. They are there around every where ...rescueing people...ferrying paras ....building material etc...

This has in its clearest sense been a coming of age for the dhruv with regards to its operational role in the Army. Good endurance for low fuel consumption comparitively and ferrying much more than the Cheetas...its proved as a Helicopter truly built for the Himalayas.
 

arnabmit

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If only they could have found a way to fold the Dhruv rotors... then we could have had them on our ACs & LPDs as well, replacing the rusky ones :sad:

Apna maal apna hota hai. Buying from foreign vendors is neither a solution nor beneficial nor wise. I will compliment much maligned DRDO and HAL for this. Taste of pudding lies in eating it. Dhruv has proven itself.
 

arnabmit

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I know, they have been trying, bu not succeeded yet... The rotors can now be folded manually, not automatically. Naval chief made his displeasure known a few months back on this...

Will search for the link...

 

vram

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Just 1300 feet of unprepared strip. Hope you read that too.
Yes sir very true ....The Hercules and the Dhruv have been among the major revelations in this tragedy.
Saw a video of the hercules landing at a field with pressed mud rather than even a proper hard ground. Awesome capability that aircraft has got. Many people where sceptical about this buy few years back(me included) because of the price tag. I was for actually upgrading the AN-32 fleet rather than going for a entirely new family of aircraft. But it seems that i got it wrong.
Also as for the Dhruv we what can we say.....In ALMOST every picture that we get of this tragedy we have the Dhruv in the background. At more than half up the height of the Everest and still going strong at full load and capacity and also doing non-stop sorties...well mud on the face of the critics for indigenous programs.
Below is the Dhruv landing on a pad actually constructed with uneven Debris!!
 

sayareakd

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I know, they have been trying, bu not succeeded yet... The rotors can now be folded manually, not automatically. Naval chief made his displeasure known a few months back on this...

Will search for the link...
then it wont be much of Light helicopter. You want everything that is on the Heavy helicopter at the price and structure of light helicopter. The very fact that it has folding blades speaks for itself. May be @Decklander sir will throw more light on the matter, why automatic folding blades are require in AC.
 
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Decklander

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It is not necessory to have automatic blade fold system but blades must be folded to save space and park the helo in the hanger. Chetak operated by navy has manual blade fold system.
 

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Apna maal apna hota hai. Buying from foreign vendors is neither a solution nor beneficial nor wise. I will compliment much maligned DRDO and HAL for this. Taste of pudding lies in eating it. Dhruv has proven itself.
Something tells me that even LCA would be a similar success (though muted & low-key success), notwithstanding the delays & hiccups.
 

arnabmit

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Auto fold system would add 100kgs to the frame...

Folding Main Rotor.

An on-board helo has to be accommodated into a very small hangar space, which means that the main rotors must have a system of hinges, which allow them to be quickly folded before putting the helo into the hangar (and then, equally quickly, unfolded when it is brought out for another flight). The navy's initially stated requirement was for the rotors to be folded within a width of 3.5 metres.

Furthermore, the navy wants an automatic blade folding facility, of the kind that is installed in its Sea King helos. In this, onboard electrical or hydraulic actuators fold up the blades quickly, rather than having to go through the longer and more painstaking process of manually folding the blades. Remember, that in the smaller warships, the tips of the main rotor blades extend beyond the deck, overhanging the sea. So manually folding them --- by removing bolts and supporting the blades during folding/unfolding --- is an exercise that the navy would rather avoid.

HAL had a problem with foldable blades, as well as with installing an automatic system. A senior Dhruv designer told me, "the requirement of Blade Folding with a width of 3.5 metres was not feasible due to the inherent design characteristics of the ALH hingeless Main Rotor Blade with an Integrated Dynamic System".

However, HAL worked on the problem and came up with the concept of "segmented blades", which would be 5.1 metres wide instead of the navy's requirement of 3.5 metres. HAL says the navy has agreed to the 5.1 metre width, and that the process of manually folding the "segmented blades" has been demonstrated to the navy.

However, HAL has not installed an automatic folding facility. HAL tells me, "Automatic blade folding was not pursued due to weight penalty of about 100 kgs".

It may be useful here, for the readers' understanding, to describe what HAL means by "segmented blades".

"Segmented blades" comprise of two blade parts. The outer part is folded inwards to obtain the desired folded width. The other option is that of "Hingeless blades", which have no physical hinges. These are made of composite materials, which ensures "virtual hinges".
Broadsword: The Indian Navy’s Dhruv: falling between two stools

then it wont be much of Light helicopter. You want everything that is on the Heavy helicopter at the price and structure of light helicopter. The very fact that it has folding blades speaks for itself. May be @Decklander sir will throw more light on the matter, why automatic folding blades are require in AC.
 
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